3 Ways to Use Retargeting to Find Success Online


Have you integrated retargeting (or, as Google calls it, remarketing) into your online marketing strategy?

If you have, have you been using it to its greatest potential?

Retargeting is a powerful tool, enabling businesses to recapture much of their lost website traffic.

This article will get into three different ways you can use retargeting (or remarketing, or whatever) to find success online.

Let’s get rolling!

How does retargeting work again?

  • Third party software provides you with a small section of code (or, if you use a landing page template that has retargeting built into it, your campaign is pretty much done for you)
  • You drag and drop that section of code into your website or landing page
  • Whenever someone traffics to that page, they trigger the pixel
  • If they leave that page without completing a certain action (becoming a lead, purchase, or other conversion) the pixel sends a “cookie” which attaches itself to their browser
  • When they traffic to any one of a few hundred thousand sites around the web, they’ll be shown your business’ retargeting ad (examples below)
  • When they engage again with your business’ ad and convert on your “ask”, the cookie detaches from their browser and they stop seeing your brand’s ads

Here’s a visual representation of, essentially, why it’s awesome:

retargeting online marketing

Make sense?

#1 Way to Use Retargeting to Find Success Online: Brand Awareness

The first strategy of using retargeting to find marketing success online is brand awareness. This is usually advertising directed at visitors to your homepage, and is focused far more on increasing brand recall and reputation than it is on eliciting a sale or other conversion.

Here’s an example of a retargeting ad with the goal of increasing brand awareness:

retargeting ad owl lead gen.png

An essential part of retargeting that many businesses forget is that the same advertisement, seen over and over again, will decrease in efficacy as its “ frequency’” increases.

Here are a few best practices:

  • Create 3-4 different retargeting advertisements (once you have the template it shouldn’t be difficult)
  • Keep your brand logo and/or recognizable image the same to be sure retargeted ad viewers know the source of each ad (your brand)
  • Change your message. Come up with 2-3 different USPs and feature them in your ads
  • Test humor, different colors, etc. What series of ads works best?

And here’s another example of a brand awareness retargeting ad (perhaps the 3rd of 5 ads):

retargeting ad lead generation

This kind of conscious advertising, in which you poke slight fun at your brand’s own campaign, is a tone worth testing. Some businesses will find more success with four or five serious ads that make value clear and entice engagement. I recommend you determine which strategy will work best for your business based on target market and success you’ve had in communication strategies previously.

#2 Way to Use Retargeting to Find Success Online: Product Promotion

The second place you should be retargeting traffic is your product pages. Each of your tools (or product categories) should have their own corresponding ad – thus increasing the personalization of your traffic’s retargeting campaign.

Basically what that last sentence means is that your retargeting ads will be clicked on far more if the ad corresponds well with what your traffic was initially interested in. For instance, if your ecommerce site has a “men’s bags” category, the traffic that bounces off that particular page will be far more likely to re-engage if they’re targeted with an ad specific to “men’s bags”.

Here’s an example of a SaaS retargeting ad:

retargeting lead generation

This ad would be part one or two of a five-part series of ads. This series would be focused on traffic who bounced from the business’ CRM products page. There would be a different series of ads for traffic who bounced from the email marketing automation tool page or analytics tool page.

Optimizing this strategy would mean having different ads (again) for people that negotiate your website in different ways before bouncing. For instance…

  • Traffic that came in from an online advertisement would receive a different retargeted ad message than traffic coming organically
  • Traffic that visited multiple tools would receive a different series of retargeted ads than traffic who focused only on one tool
  • Traffic that partially filled out a form could be retargeted with a prompt to complete their conversion (and with auto-fill form fields their details could be retained)

The order and design of your retargeted ads are as important as they are for your other online advertisements. They’re just as testable too. Put time and energy into optimizing your ads for the type of customer who will see them.

#3 Way to Use Retargeting to Find Success Online: Lead Generation

Retargeting traffic off a lead-generation page is something more worth testing than it is worth implementing straight away. Retargeting has an awesome ROI no matter what, but that ROI increases as your traffic increases. If your lead generation landing pages only have a few hundred visitors a month, I’d recommend you test a retargeting campaign for that first month before diving in headfirst.

The why is very simple: retargeting ads have a Click-Through-Rate of about .5%. Normally that CTR is awesome. In a Facebook Ad, that kind of CTR would have you jumping for joy and popping the champagne. .5% of 200,000 is amazing. .5% of 250? Not so awesome.

However, if you are receiving awesome traffic to your lead-generation pages (whether through an impressive online advertising campaign, social media, or organic traffic), retargeting should absolutely be used.

People who click (initially) on a lead-generation ad or link are generally very interested in it (I mean, how many people click on a link to a “small business guide to CRM” who aren’t actually interested in CRM for small businesses…). Not only does this mean that your lead gen conversion rates are often substantially higher than other campaigns, but it means that people who do bounce have a higher chance of re-engaging if you prompt them with a retargeting ad.

Here’s what one might look like:

retargeting ad lead generation

Often the reason that people bounce off your lead-gen landing page isn’t because they’re not interested in your subject matter, but rather that you’re asking too much of them.

That’s why I often recommend that people duplicate their first lead gen landing page (easy enough to do with most landing page builders and send retargeted traffic to the duplicated page. Keep everything on the page the same, but change the amount of form fields you have. If you initially asked for Name, Email Address, Job Title and Zipcode, on the duplicated landing page you should only ask for name and email address.


I hope that’s given you a few ideas and inspiration for how retargeting can work within your online marketing strategy. Consider creating ad-specific landing pages – pages specific to your retargeting traffic that have similar copy to the ads themselves (something like “welcome back” or “we missed you!”).

Remember also that you should be creating a series of retargeting ads, as exposing your business’ traffic to the same ad again and again will turn them off your brand faster than drunken social media manager.

Further Reading:

To learn another awesome way to generate leads, check out my ebook on website popups:

Or get started with Wishpond’s drag and drop popup builder today!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *